VERDICT OX INDIA
pity tor them ? A convenient doctriixe, if you happen to have
been born in the right bedroom.
'Ah, thib L very old stuff," you may say.
'Of course it is/ we answer. "And it is also very new. It is
as eld as the hills and as new as the morning dew. It is a long
way B.C. and it is also A.D. 1944.'
Let us have a few more examples from personal experience.
Slight though they are, they may help us to realize the bitter
struggle which these 60 nolhons rcust make for the most elemen-
tarv decencies, a struggle which is being carried on as you read
SCENE ONE. A bunga!owr on a small island lying a few miles
oil the west coast. We have just finished dining on the Veranda
and a British subaltern joins us for a drink. He has walked up
the hill from the seashore, where is he in charge of a training camp
for young Indian engineers. He looks tired and depressed,
'Had a try ing day?'
* Pretty sticky.9 He flings himself into a chair. 'Trouble rath
4 Aren't they coming in, fast enough ?'
*Oh—they "re coming in all right. But I have to send 'em
away again. Look over there/
He jerks his thumb over his shoulder. We see two young
Indians standing in the shadow of a eucalyptus tree, staring at
the dust. They are of exceptional physique, and they are spick
and span as though they were dressed for a party.
" See those chaps ? Well, they're two of the best who've ever
come my way, physically and mentally. Well above standard.
They want to join, my lot; I want to have them; aixd I can't.'
*\Vhy on earth not ? *
* Untouchable. Sweeper class.'
*Eut that's preposterous ! *
*Of course it is. But it's India. My men would just down tools
if I took "em on.3 -